Youth Science Center Provides Summer Science Enrichment

  • Digging for fossils, making crystals, exploring rock formations and learning about igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks was the agenda for third and fourth graders in the Rock Your World summer science class.
  • Fifth and sixth grade students in Mountain View School District’s Youth Science Center Summer Program explore the world of engineering as they create a path for energy to light a bulb.

by Michele Earle
July 16, 2014 • 343 views

El Monte

Engineering, Geology and Astronomy are what 30 students from Mountain View School District (MVSD) are exploring as part of the District’s Summer Science Enrichment classes provided by the Youth Science Center (YSC). The 14-day program provides third through sixth grade GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) students the opportunity to explore science through a variety of hands-on activities and experiments.
This is the ninth year MVSD has partnered with the YSC in Hacienda Heights to provide science enrichment for students during the summer.  This year the fifth and sixth graders are exploring the world of engineering in the class Don’t be Alarmed! The young scientists are discovering the fun of engineering as they create their own electricity and alarm circuit while learning about the engineering design process.
“We got our light bulb to light!” exclaimed Chris Valenzuela as he worked with classmates to find a path to create energy to make a light bulb light up.  “We had to make sure the Fahnestock clips had a good connection to the battery and wires.”
Teacher Brandi Koehm encouraged the students to explore with other materials to see if they could get the light bulb lit.
“We got it to light using the table leg and the rim around a pencil eraser,” said Valenzuela.  “The plastic paper clip didn’t work because you need metal to conduct energy.  Metal objects allow the current to keep flowing but the plastic works as an insulator and stops the flow of electricity.”
“Great job engineers!” said Koehm.  “This is a great class and the kids are so excited to learn about science.  They have been a joy to teach.”
Rock Your World and Beyond is the class for third and fourth graders who go on virtual field trips around the world exploring famous and special rock formations.  Students are learning about igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks and how they are made.  Each student was given a rock to name and write about for their My Pet Rock Project.
“We are incorporating creative writing and lots of science in our class,” said Ms. Daniels, YSC instructor.  “The students use iPads to conduct research and we’ve studied volcanoes and fossils.”
Students were busy making Borax Crystals using string, Borax and boiling water, and through their exploration and research learned that crystals grow in igneous rocks.
“This is a good class with lots of fun activities,” said Jarett Rincones from Monte Vista.
During the final days of the class the students will explore the solar system including the planets, stars and moons inside and beyond the solar system as well as the history of space exploration.
“The Youth Science Center classes are tremendous and provide our students with great science instruction and opportunities to explore the areas of science.  It’s wonderful to see the students so excited about science and learning,” said Sylvia Rivera, Parkview principal.
MVSD is grateful to the Youth Science Center for partnering with the District to provide such a great summer enrichment program for students.

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